American cable company Liberty Global has pulled out of the bidding proces to acquire telecom company T-Mobile's Dutch subsidiary. For a very long time, Liberty Global was the prime candidate.
Warburg Pincus or Apollo
Sources close to the deal confirmed the news to Dutch paper De Financiële Telegraaf. With Liberty Global out of the picture, only investors Warburg Pincus and Apollo are left as potential buyers for T-Mobile. Warburg Pincus is mostly known as the former shareholder in telecom company Ziggo.
Both Warburg Pincus and Apollo have already tabled a non-binding 2.5 billion euro bid, on top of an earn-out arrangement for T-Mobile's Dutch division. There are only a few weeks left for any binding offer to be made.
Sources indicate that Liberty Global's withdrawal may bring investment firm Apax back to the table after it had previously bailed out of the bidding process. Apax, a British investor, was previously publisher PCM's owner, which owns - among other things - the Volkskrant and NRC Handelsblad.